Sunday, August 30, 2009

On a new road.......

We like to think that we're in control of life, that we can steer it, or influence it, or sway it a certain way, but we can't. Life doesn't collaborate with us, it doesn't consult and it doesn't need approval before it happens, it just happens to us.

Sometimes we feel blessed by life and what it heaps out on us, we lay back and bask it in and praise life for being good and praise God for letting it be good. And then sometimes we feel like life is something being inflicted upon is, we bury our heads in our hands and wonder "why me?!" and we question God for letting life get so bad. Life is tricky.

My life has felt a lot like the latter these days.

Its been very hard not to question God, and wonder "why me?!". Seriously, though, "WHY ME?!" I've lost so much, when do I get a break? REALLY! A son's death, a husband falling out of love and a miscarriage, I've really had enough, how much more can life throw at me? More importantly, how much more can I endure?

The answer is uncertain, we won't know how much is too much until its too late to care, so I suppose there's no sense it giving it much more thought. We'll endure until we no longer endure, and when that happens, we won't have too many worries on our minds.

About a month ago I was on a different road, going somewhere different but just as uncertain. I was no more in control of my life then I am right now, but I was happy with life, I felt safe and loved and certain that God was with me in it. Then I had the rug torn out from under me and it sent me into a tailspin of confusion and sadness and pain not unlike the pain of losing Everett, but different because it was combined with guilt and fear and confusion I did not feel when Everett died. Suddenly I couldn't see the road, I had no idea where I was going and I was beside myself with anxiety and loneliness. Scary. I can see the road again now. Not well, not clearly, but I've got my bearings back. This new road is different, and my not contain the stops I thought I was going to have, but it looks interesting, could have some promising stops along the way, though every now and then I may need to stop and ask for directions (God is a wonderful tour guide!).

Life can be very, very good, and when it is we feel triumphant and powerful. It can also be very, very bad, and that makes us feel small and scared and anxious. When you're feeling low and frightened, its easy to lose sight of the road, confusion is like a fog that settles in your path and clouds your vision, its dangerous to let yourself feel afraid of the road you're on. Since you're not really in control in the first place, God is actually your driver, what sense is there in fearing the road you're traveling? Even when you take an unexpected detour, even when it gets dark, or stormy, you're no more (or less) in control then you were on the sunny, clear path you may have just come off of. You just have to hold on, and ride it out, and let life (and God) take you where they will.

Fear won't put me back on the road I was on, neither will anger, or despair. We can only go forward. I trust that in time, the road ahead will clear up, and I'll start to enjoy the ride again. I trust that in the meantime God will help me navigate while its dark and scary and lonely. I trust that there are good times ahead, on this new road I'm on.


Sunday, August 9, 2009

Finding hope in a bedtime story....

Its been a long day, and a gloomy one at that. Before putting Avery to bed we selected a bedtime story to read and settled on the couch. We chose "When the creepy things come out", a story about Halloween and scary things and not being afraid because God is with us. At the very end of the book was a bible verse, it seems it was custom picked for me.

"Do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with
my righteous right hand."

Isaiah 41:10

That's just what I need.

Tonight God speaks through bedtime stories.

I am listening, and somewhat comforted.


Weathering another storm

Nearly two years ago I learned how completely hateful and unfair life can be.

Life can be incredibly painful. We face trials, we struggle, we get knocked down and we climb back to our feet and carry on.

I don't know why I imagined that one earth shattering tragedy was all life would throw at me, I don't why I assumed I was now immune to another event that would shake me to my core. I should have known better.

My son died 20 months ago. I fell to pieces, drowned in the grief, leaned on God for comfort and got myself back on my feet, stumbling daily, but moving forward. Imagine me hobbling along life's path, crippled by grief but living and loving and trusting that things were getting better, now imagine me stepping off a curb and getting hit by a bus. Bam. I'm down again.

Here I am weathering another of life's storms. The skies are nearly black, its raining heavily and I've never heard such thunder! Had I never lost a baby and experienced this sort of storm before, I would fear this storm less. But, I've been through one of these hurricanes, this feeling is so familiar, and I am quaking in my little vessel. And, to add insult to injury, my major support system, my anchor, isn't here for me, what will I cling to now? What will get me through this storm? How will I ever recover from this? How will I get back to my feet this time?

God. Family. Friends. Hope.

I'll lean on these things.

I'll put my trust in God, that he has a plan for this, and he will work it for my good and the good of my family. I'll give this to him and wait for the flowers to grow out of this dirt.

I'll let my family love me, and focus on loving them more. I'll let them comfort me and surround myself in people I know love me UNCONDITIONALLY. I'll learn to survive on this love alone.

I'll let my friends hold me up, they always do. I'll take their advice and listen to their stories and be contented in the fact that God has placed so many amazing people in my life. I'll allow myself to be distracted and to have fun even.

I'll have hope. I'll hold on to hope. I'll watch for signs that there is still hope. And I'll pray that my hope is not false. And this brings us back to God.

This is what I'm up against. Feelings black as the water. Atmosphere's a harsh as the storming sky. Stomach heaving like the waves. Its terrifying. This is where I am.

This is where I thought I was....

I think you'll understand my confusion, my hurt, and my absolute inability to comprehend how I'll ever stand up again. But, with God, family, friends, and hope, this is where I intend to be again.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A different sort of grief.....

The past few days have been the most heart breaking days since Everett died. I've cried tears only rivaled by the tears I've cried for my lost baby. Aside from the "mother grief", I've never been in so much pain.

The realization that I am partially, if not totally responsible for this pain is unsettling. I broke something a long time ago, and now I don't know if I can fix it. Looking back I can clearly see the warning signs, the stress fractures before the big break, but I wasn't paying any attention, I was too busy trying to deflect the attention elsewhere, and now I am grieved, and sorry, and embarrassed, and scared, scared that what I broke cannot be repaired.

The trickiest thing is that I am sort of powerless at this point. I can't force the break back together, I can't talk it into mending, I can't coerce it, crying doesn't help it either. I just have to wait, and pray, and cry to myself, and pray that God will bring the two pieces together again, and that this pain will be brief.

I can't go into much detail, partially because I'm trying to be private and protective of this hurt and the reasons behind it, and partially because typing out the hows and why's adds a new dimension of "real" to it, and I'm worried that will make it hurt all the more.